A second person is seeking damages from a St. Louis grocery chain and an Oklahoma foodservice provider in relation to this fall’s 10-state E. coli outbreak linked to romaine lettuce.
Charles Meyer, 61, of St. Louis County, developed an E. coli infection after eating romaine lettuce and other salad bar items from a Schnucks Supermarket in October. He filed suit Dec. 29 in St. Louis County Circuit Court against Schnucks and Vaughan Foods Inc., Moore, Okla.
Both Meyer and Mary Kozlowski — who was the first victim to file suit — are represented by the Marler Clark law firm of Seattle.
Although no positive test results were ever generated from any produce samples, federal health and food safety officials determined romaine lettuce distributed by Vaughn Foods was the likely culprit. About 60 people in 10 states were sickened during the outbreak. No one died, but a number were hospitalized.
Mark Vaughan, president of Vaughan Foods Inc., said Dec. 23 that his company does supply Schnucks with a variety of fresh-cut produce. He added that Vaughan Foods has had a clean record in terms of food safety, but declined further comment because of the pending litigation.
The CDC’s report on the outbreak suggested the contamination probably occurred at a farm, but the farm the romaine came from was no longer in production when federal officials went there during the investigation. Neither the CDC nor the Food and Drug Administration have named the farm in question.